Skip to main content

Full text of "To The Lighthouse"

See other formats


in the air with excitement.   Or he might sit at the
head of the table dead silent from one end of
dinner to the other.    Yes, thought James, while
the boat slapped and dawdled there in the hot
sun;   there was a waste of snow and rock very
lonely and austere; and there he had come to
feel,  quite   often   lately,  when  his father said
something which surprised the others, were two
pairs of footprints only; his own and his father's.
They alone knew each other.    What then was
this terror, this hatred?   Turning back among
the many leaves which the past had folded in
him,   peering   into   the   heart   of   that   forest
where light and shade  so  chequer each  other
that all shape is distorted,  and one  blunders,
now with the sun  in  one's eyes,  now  with a
dark shadow, he sought an image to cool and
detach and round off his feeling in a concrete
shape.    Suppose then   that   as   a   child  sitting
helpless   in  a  perambulator,   or   on   someone's
knee, he had seen a waggon crush ignorantly
and innocently, someone's foot?   Suppose he had
seen the foot first, in the grass, smooth, and whole;
then  the wheel;   and  the  same  foot,   purple,
crushed.   But the wheel was innocent.   So now,
when his father came striding down the passage
knocking them up early in the morning to go to
the Lighthouse down it came over his foot, over